Words to the Wise: One Less Spark…………………

Sparky, the Fire Prevention dog, wants everyone to be careful when using outdoor equipment that could spark a fire.
Sparky, the Fire Prevention dog, wants everyone to be careful when using outdoor equipment that could spark a fire.

Everyone knows the fire danger this year is extremely high in the mountains due to lack of rain and snow this past winter. Obviously that situation makes the chance of a fire all the more likely. The information was provided by Cal Fire. (the state’s fire agency.)

So, here are some suggestions from Laura Dyberg, chair of the Mountain Rim Fire Safe Council.

ONE LESS SPARK:

Whether working to create defensible space around your home, just mowing the lawn or pulling your dirt bike over to the side of the road, if you live in a wildland area, you need to use all equipment responsibly. lawn mowers, weed eaters, chain saws, grinders, welders, tractors and trimmers can all spark a wildland fire. Do you part, the right way, to keep your community as fire-safe as possible.

Here’s some suggestions that partime and fulltime residents should take to heart:

MOWING

* If you have a lawn mow it before 10 a .m. but never when it’s windy or excessively dry.

* Lawn mowers are designed to mow lawns, not weeds or dry grass.

* Metal blades striking rocks can create sparks and start fires.

* Use extreme caution when using this handy device.

SPARK ARRESTERS

* In wildland areas, spark arresters are required on all portable gasoline-powered equipment. This includes tractors, harvesters, chainsaws, weedeaters and mowers.

* Keep the exhaust system, spark arresters and mower in proper working order and free of carbon buildup.

* Use the recommended grade of fuel and don’t top it off.

EQUIPMENT USE

* In wildland areas, grinding and welding operations require a permit and 10 feet of clearance.  Keep a shovel and a fire extinguisher ready to use.

* Don’t drive your vehicle onto dry grass or brush. Hot exhaust pipes and mufflers can start fires that you won’t even see…..until it’s too late!

* Keep a cell phone nearby and call 9-1-1- immediately if there’s a fire.

ENVIRONMENT

To protect water quality, do not clear  vegetation near waterways located by bare soil. Vegetation removal can cause soil erosion, especially  on steep slopes.

 

 

 

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